Outlook 16
News and Views from St. Mary's Woodbridge
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Uzima goes from strength to strength
Uzima goes from strength to strength Diane Milan provides an update on her Uzima Project in Tanzania A much longed-for outcome has taken place in my Uzima project in Tanzania. Following three European co-ordinators, an experienced Tanzanian co-ordinator, Elvis Joseph Miti, has been appointed. Elvis comes from our partner project PASADA – an acronym for ‘Pastoral Activities and Services for people with AIDS in Dar es Salaam Archdiocese’. PASADA gave me my first introduction to HIV and AIDS in 2006. They provide all-round services to sufferers and their families, such as laboratory testing and bereavement counselling, and over the years they have helped us greatly with training for staff and volunteers. I am confident that Elvis will be well trained and lead a project that continues to serve the community and empower its members, particularly the volunteers from the villages. Christine Salvisberg from Switzerland, the present co-ordinator, leaves in December and it has been decided to transfer the last of the funding (£300) raised here at St Mary’s at this point. She says: ‘Thanks so much for your funding! Probably the money will be spent on building a house for an old grandmother with three small orphaned children. They all have been chased away by other family members. The eldest boy (aged 5) got burnt with boiling water (head, arms and back) and then was left alone in the house during five days. After the MVC (Most Vulnerable Children) volunteers disclosed this situation, UZIMA reported it to the police and the uncle was imprisoned. Because the grandmother (finally) stood up for the children they were chased away. Now the four of them live in a rented house, which is not safe. The parish agreed to buy a plot of land for the children and UZIMA is now looking for funds to build a house, which is safe.’ The project continues its work in the following three areas: Most Vulnerable Children provides support for education, in particular, as well as the shelter and pyscho-social support described above.